U.S. stock index futures edged up on Thursday ahead of data that is likely to show a drop in weekly jobless claims. Shares of vaccine makers are likely to extend losses after President Joe Biden announced his plan to back intellectual property waivers on coronavirus vaccines.
In premarket trading, shares of all involved in the making of COVID-19 vaccines, fell between 0.6% and 5.4%. These include Pfizer Inc, Moderna Inc, Johnson & Johnson, and Novavax Inc.
Biden said he had backed a World Trade Organization (WTO) waiver for vaccine intellectual property. The declines came after this statement from the U.S. President about his move to enhance the fight against the pandemic.
In the previous session, the Dow Jones Industrial Average ended at a record high. It was lifted by gains in economically sensitive cyclical stocks. On the other hand, the Nasdaq was hit by declines in growth stocks.
Dow e-minis were up 48 points, or 0.14% at 6:40 a.m. ET. S&P 500 e-minis added 7.75 points, or 0.19%, and Nasdaq 100 e-minis gained 48.75 points, or 0.36%.
Microsoft Corp, Apple Inc, Alphabet Inc and Amazon.com Inc advanced between 0.1% and 0.3%. These gains led to the rise in shares of highly valued technology-related stocks on Thursday.
International Business Machines Corp rose 0.4%, among other companies. It introduced what it says is the world’s first 2-nanometer chip making technology for faster computing.
Uber Technologies Inc said it would pay drivers more to get cars back on the road. Moreover, it also disclosed a $600 million charge to provide UK drivers with benefits. The company’s stock dipped 3.6% following this statement.
Meanwhile, the Labor Department report is expected to show initial jobless claims fell to 540,000 last week from 553,000 in the previous week.
The Labor Department’s more comprehensive non-farm payrolls data on Friday is expected to show a faster job growth in April.
Elsewhere, shares rose to near record highs on Thursday, supported by a better outlook from Europe’s leading carmaker Volkswagen. Additionally, by a growing confidence in economic recovery in Germany.
The STOXX index of 600 European companies added 0.2% at 442.50 points. ACWI, the MSCI’s broadest gauge of world stocks, rose 0.18% at 700.98 points. That was about 10 points short of its record high set in April.
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